Wednesday, November 19, 2014

To acrylic or not?

Hi all, I notice this subject comes up quite often here where some of us who are mainly watercolor artists are thinking of branching out into painting with acrylics. When I was in college, I used acrylics often and was pretty good at it, but now it seems I've forgotten how to use them and mix the colors I want. I often get inspired by reading articles about artists who are creating fabulous paintings in acrylics, and I know many galleries prefer paintings that aren't framed under glass. A few years ago I was inspired enough to purchase a full set of Artelier Interactive acrylics, as they are advertised as drying slower than traditional. Well I finally started a painting with them, but despite the slower drying, I was still having problems with blending and the transparency of some of the colors was a problem too. I wanted them to be as opaque as oils, and dry slower. A couple of years went by, and I won a $100 certificate for Golden acrylics as part of a merchandise award at a Watercolor West show, so I decided to attempt to try working with acrylics again, as what is more inspiring that a brand new set of paints?  It took me a year to decide whether to try their new "open" acrylics or just go with their traditional ones. I was torn because after talking to several professional acrylic painters, they said they much prefer the traditional ones, but as I mentioned before, I have trouble with how quickly the traditional ones dry, which makes it difficult to blend the way I like. The expiration date was nearing, so i ended up paying a little extra and ordering a set of BOTH types. That was a year ago and as you can see from this pic, they are still wrapped in cellophane in the boxes they came in LOL! Meanwhile, I had started a painting with the Artelier acrylics that I had put aside as it was too time consuming to keep going over the yellow colors to make them more opaque (The painting is of yellow daffodils) and was having trouble getting the colors right. Yellow is always a difficult color anyway, getting the dark values right. Well now I've dusted this painting off and am going to attempt finishing it with my "new" set of Golden acrylics (remember they are a year old already). Since the tubes haven't been opened yet, I'm assuming they'll still be fresh. The sets came with color mixing charts, so hopefully I'll be able to get the dark values of yellow better and not so brown looking. For your amusement I've included a picture of my various brands of acrylics (Artelier, Daniel Smith, Liquitex, Winsor Newton, and last but not least, my two unopened sets of Golden acrylics. Also I've included an in progress pic of the daffodil painting I'm going to try to finish by January 1 for a local winery show I like to enter. It's 18" x 24" on gallery wrapped canvas. I've taped my reference pic to the canvas. The theme is always daffodils and/or tulips, which is why I started this one in the first place. If I finish it, it will be the first acrylic painting I've finished in almost 40 years LOL! Wish me luck!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Pet portrait commission

Hi all, as I mentioned in an earlier post, I'm currently working on a pet portrait..something I rarely do, as commissions can be stressful, especially if the customer wants to many things in the painting. This painting is a surprise Christmas gift for a friend/relative of the customer, so I wasn't able to take my own pictures of the pet..I had to rely on the customer's which were sent through email and rather pixelated and not real sharp. The important elements they want to include in the painting other than the dog, are the dog's toy purse, it's name tag, and it was important that the dog be on a lawn. So, I was sent separate pics of the dog, the lawn , the name tag and the toy purse..none of them to scale with each other. Fortunately I have Photoshop so could size and piece all the elements in one photo, so that is what I've been working from. The picture of the dog wasn't on a lawn, it was lying in the backseat of a car (black upholstery) so I had to cut it out of the seat and place it on the lawn pic and will try to make it look like she's really lying on a lawn. Here's what I've done so far with it. Still have a ways to go..I'll post another pic when I'm farther along.

Winter Is Upon Us!

Well it is that time of year again when many of us get busy painting because the snow and cold keeps us inside! This is when I usually ask what your plans are for this winter or goals!
I have begun a new painting and if it is ever not gray out and not so windy I will get outside and get a picture of where I am at. Sometimes it helps to do that and get excited to move on with the painting. I have not painted since the first of July because of health problems so it is hard to get my butt glued back into a chair! ha! I have a whole different routine now and I have to break that and get back to painting!  I will see how this painting goes and if I like it I might try several in a similar set up.
Some of you have had workshops you attended and we would love to hear about those! Some have those to look forward to this winter!
Hoping we hear from you and find out what you are up to and maybe even some pictures!
Stay Warm!

Monday, November 17, 2014

CWA show

Hi all, I hand delivered my painting to the upcoming California Watercolor Association's annual national show since it was just a little over an hour's drive. It was nice I got to see a sneak preview of the show as they had the shipped paintings there too. I got to get a close look at Ona Kingdon's entry..OMG so fabulous! It's going to be a great show this year! Here are the pics I had taken of me with my painting and with Ona's. Looking forward to the reception in January.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Solveig does it again! Flowers for the Rancho Mirage Library reception

Had fun at the Rancho Mirage Public Library reception for the three watercolor ladies.... Robin St. Louis, Moira Johannessen and yours truly.  Unbelievably, Solveig Rimstad who lives in Norway sent her Palm Desert cousin Inger Yarijian with a beautiful bouquet of flowers for me. That's the second time she has done this. Thank you Solveig!  Inger took a picture of me with the flowers, I thought, but it is missing from my camera. Must not have pushed the button hard enough.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014


Oh my I ran off to town early this morning and did not get this posted!!

♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪ Happy Birthday to you-u-u-u,♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪Happy Birthday to you-u-u-u,♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪ Happy Birthday, dear Diane ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪ Happy Birthday to you-u-u-u!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hope your day is full of joy and laughter!!!

Monday, November 10, 2014

SKB in September

I am so far behind. As you know, Marilyn Wear, Helen Shideler and myself went to the SKB workshop in Wyoming in September. This year I didn't go outside to paint. I stayed inside every day to take classes from the fabulous Mort Solberg. Here are two of the sketches that I did. These are my version of wildlife...heck, I live in California so what do you expect? These are fast paintings, college style. Mort taught us to spread and pour colors on the paper, let them dry and figure out what you see. He even said turn the paper upside down to see something new. The Rock star is done but Party girls isn't. Helen's husband is in the picture of the three of us. I will post other pictures  later.

SKB Wyoming 2014

Here are a few pictures that I took while in Wyoming. I spent most of my time indoors painting in Mort's class. Someone was killed by a grizzly bear right before the workshop started so I was hesitant to venture outside. The colors this year were beautiful.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Call of the Raven

I just finished this painting this morning. "Call of the Raven" is the first in a series I am planning to paint hopefully before the end of this year!  High hopes, eh?  I took so many photos of ravens in Yellowstone this year (and last year also)  that I knew I had to get started somewhere.    The next painting is a 1/2 sheet and more ambitious.  This one was to help me think about it in the right way (I hope) to get the larger painting right.

Heading out to San Francisco in the wee hours of the morning.  The weather service is predicting yet another nor-easter.  Yuck.  I do not like turbulence - oh well, complaining about it will not make it any better.

This is a 1/4 sheet water-colour.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Still around

Just letting you know that even if I'm quiet with art I still follow you from behind my steering wheel in the truck.  i love all of your work and congratulate every one of you for all the work you accomplish.  I miss you all so much.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Little White Church

oil painting of little white church
copyright Vernita Bridges Hoyt 2010
"The Little White Church"
Contemporary Painting - 'The Little White Church' (Original Art from Vernita Bridges Hoyt)

The Little White Church

I am so glad I could contribute a professional giclee print to an auction fundraiser for the Historic First Christian Church building in Grapeland, Texas. I donated the first run artist's proof, signed for the occasion. I was surprised with a nice article written by the board of directors about me and my paintings that was published in a tri-county newspaper, The Messenger. Totally surprised, and appreciative!

The original painting, oil on linen-wrapped board, was painted entirely with a palette knife and was sold soon after completion. The 9x12 inch print of the Historic First Christian Church building in Grapeland, Texas, also is available online. Twenty-percent of the print sale profits will be donated to the building maintenance fund. Please view a large painting detail at the link above.


Plains Motel

Friday Kay was coming through town, and we were going to meet at the DQ, but i told her I would be at the Motel sketching when she came through.  She stopped and we both sketched. My first one was a warm up i guess....cause i was talking! haha..when she left i got my big sketchbook and re-sketched it in the car, and painted it while i was there to see shadows, etc.  It was such fun to see Kay, and to sketch! This was taken with my phone, and it needs to be redone,  having a few computer issues right now, so this will have to work. I don't know what it is about sketching or  painting on location, but I feel so good after I do a sketch. It is addictive because of the feeling of satisfaction that you get from it. I wish we could all go on a sketch trip! 

"Heaven is a '57" on wine label for 50's car event.

Look what I got in the mail yesterday! 
My "Heaven is a '57" watercolor on the wine label for
Lost in the 50's weekend-long 50's event in Sandpoint, Idaho.
These bottles were given as gifts to all who entered their classic cars in the show. Big weekend of cars, dancing and entertainment. Leslie Gore was one of the headliners.


I am on a roll.  Just finished this morning and have a couple more on the go.  This is an 11 x 14 watercolour on Aquabord.  I called it Flirt, just seemed right somehow.

I am uncertain  about watercolour on Aquabord.  I keep going back in and trying and always come up uncertain.  The resolution on this photo is not doing it justice... it is sharper. I love acrylics on Aquabord. I may have to change my approach and ditch the water-colour on this stuff.

Yikes, I just noticed I only have one sheet of Arches 300 lb paper left.  Have any of you purchases any since they were acquired?  I really hope it is the same quality.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Finally finely finished

Well, I have been working on this painting of white roses seemingly forever.  I almost cannot believe I finally finished it and signed it this past weekend!

It was truly looming over me. I have so much work to get done before Christmas and could not focus with this one "looking" at me. There will be lots more to follow soon.

This is an old fashioned rose that grows at the back of our garden.  It starts out transparent white (almost) and as the season matures, the blooms get increasingly pinkish and corral. I think I do a painting of this bush each year!

With all the travelling around this summer and early fall, I felt AWOL and missed my studio so much and also my Art Colony friends. Happy to be back at it and able to participate again :)

Friday, October 10, 2014


On the rocks for a break or setting up a campsite.. use your imagination :)